Friendly Friday- Guest Blogger #1

For the next few Fridays I am going to be featuring guest bloggers or as I’m calling it “Friendly Friday”. You will be able to meet/read about some amazing moms (and hopefully a dad or two!) and see what they have to share! Please be sure to check out their blogs as well. We bloggers always love our readers support!

So, I would like to introduce you to my first guest blogger, Dani. I hope you enjoy reading her post as much as I did!

How Do I Do It?

I have five kids. Yes, I really do. On some days, I consider The Big Guy my sixth, but that topic is for a different day. So, yeah five kids, four boys and a girl. Two of the boys are entering the seventh grade, two boys are entering third and my daughter will be starting kindergarten this year. Three different stages of a kid’s life, all under one roof, and I get to be the one who tries to sort it all out. How do I do it? I get asked that a lot, especially the first time I meet someone new and they have just found out that I don’t have a normal two or three child household.

How do I do it…I don’t really have a concrete answer. I try my hardest to balance the daily task of raising five, against the daily needs of myself, The Big Guy and life in general. I am always on the go, whether it is to drop kids off at school, running errands, picking kids up from school, shuffling kids to sports practices, volunteering at the schools or just trying to maintain our household. I don’t have time or the mentality to plop myself down onto the couch and relax, mainly due to the fact that there is always something that needs to be done and the fact that five kids or not, I like my house presentable to the outside world. How do I do it? My inability to take five minutes for myself plays a major role in my ability to raise the five kids. I chose to be a mother to five, which inadvertently puts the wants and needs of me on the back burner. And I am 100% okay with that.

I am sure the first thing people think when they hear five kids, is chaos, craziness, insanity. At times, those three words describe my household to a tee. However, the rest of the time, the time that really matters, my house if full of love, happiness, friendship and laughter. By no means am I trying to say that raising five kids is all fun and games, because it is not. It is tiring, stressful, and demanding, but it also rewarding and always entertaining. I try my hardest to let my children learn by trial and error, instead of being a hovering, umbrella parent, which is extremely hard when you factor in five kids and potentially five different sets of tears to wipe away.

The biggest challenge in raising this number of kids is the ability to make sure each kid can experience each aspect of life (the good, the bad, the ugly) on their own. I want to make sure each child can stand independently on their own, instead of being defined as one of the five. This alone, can at times, seem like an impossible task. Each child has their own personality, needs, and learning ability. Having to balance all the differing traits is sometimes draining. I have good parenting days and I have bad ones. Some days I have to ignore the needs of one kid because the needs of another is (at that moment) more dire. I sometimes refer to myself as a puppeteer, standing on stage, trying to balance and not tangle the five puppets I am holding. It is a juggling act that I don’t take lightly, one that I take to heart. If I see one child upset, I feel their pain. If another has accomplished something, I am their biggest supporter.

Having said that our life can at times, be chaotic. Five kids do not get along 100% of the time. Honestly, five kids don’t get along 90% of the time. I would say 85% is a good number. The two sets of boys (whom are not actual twins, but for the sake of simplicity,

I sometimes refer to them that way) are best friends with their counterpart. The oldest two are about to turn thirteen and act like teenagers. They hang out in their room, play video games, watch You Tube videos and are starting to get embarrassed whenever I open my mouth. The middle set of boys is my more adventurous, life of the party kids. They are the joined at the hip. And then we have my daughter. She is the baby of the crew and knows how to work over her four brothers. She is a diva to the max, sassy and my only kid who has both common sense and book smarts. I worry about her the least out of all of them. She is also the trouble maker of the group. Most of the fights involve my daughter. Most of the chaos that occurs has her fingerprints all over it. She knows how to cause trouble but at the same time, be victimized by it. Even though there is chaos, I would say our house is no different from our neighbors who have two kids. Actually, I will say, my kids are (99% of the time) more behaved then theirs.

Even with the fighting and chaos, my family is filled with love and laughter. The laughter has always been louder than the fighting. My kids, at the end of the day, actually like each other. As much as they complain and moan and whine about so and so being in their room or touching one of their toys, the kids have a strong, loving bond. That is something that I cherish and hold dear to my heart. I pride myself on the fact that our family is no different from others. We hang out as a family on the weekends. We go to the movies together. We go to Walt Disney World and take ridiculous, silly pictures with the characters, as a family of seven.

How do I do it? I just do. I don’t follow any rules. I don’t give myself goals. I don’t use the words have to. I expect my kids to try their hardest. I expect them to try and behave the best that they can. I expect my kids to make mistakes. I also expect my kids to achieve, dream and prosper. I don’t live my life requiring anything. I try to teach the kids to do their best. Period. I don’t care if I am raising the next great baseball player or nuclear scientist. I don’t care if my kids don’t get straight A’s on their report cards. All I care is that, when the kids are older, they can look back and say “you know what Mom, you did good.”

Parenting is the same, no matter how many kids you have. You want your kids to have the best you can give them, to be happy, and to be loved.

I think I am doing all that, and hopefully more.

*Dani is a SAHM to five and a wife to one. On a daily basis, I attempt to balance motherhood, love and sex. Sometimes I get lucky. Sometimes I don’t. To find Dani, you can visit her blog at www.suburbiainterrupted.com and on twitter at www.twitter.com/sunshinemommy.

Comments

  1. I too have 5 kids (4 girls and 1 boy) and since mine are older than yours I will tell you we do survive this crazy whirlwind of parenting.. I love that I have 5 because it’s always exciting, more people to love & be loved by and while it was not always easy it’s well worth the effort..
    (PS- one of my daughter’s name is Renee’ :-)

  2. Wow, I can’t even imagine having five kids to care for! I’ve only got one almost two-year-old daughter now, and some days I can feel so rundown. I’m amazed that you say, “I chose to be a mother to five, which inadvertently puts the wants and needs of me on the back burner. And I am 100% okay with that.” Do you ever find a little time for yourself (weekly, monthly, even)?

    I just wrote a post for Sunday about how I’m discovering that I NEED to start making time for myself again, as I did before I had a child. Although I dream of having a big family like yours, I recognize that this would mean “me time” would virtually disappear. Maybe I’m just not cut-out for more than a couple of children!

    - Evanthia

    • Hi Evanthia,
      Every other weekend, my husband and I split the kids up between grandparents and we have a kids free 24 hrs. That is my me time and date night lol. And at the end of the day i do have time for ‘me time’. You get used to the amount of kids and learn to take time wherever you get it lol.

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